Jion kata group

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Ji'in, Jion, and Jitte form a group of kata used in Shotokan and other karate styles, beginning with the same characteristic kamae of the left hand covering the right, which apparently has roots in ancient Chinese boxing.[citation needed] Their origin is thought to be from the Tomari-te school, however Hirokazu Kanazawa speculates that the Jion kata were devised in the Jionji 慈恩寺, the Jion temple, where martial arts were famously practiced. From there, Kanazawa believes the Jion kata were spread into the Tomari region.[1]


Ji'in 慈陰 ("Inverted Mercy") is important for the execution of many simultaneous techniques and the often-repeated stances, enabling swift changes of direction while maintaining balance, power and steps of equal length. It has, however, been removed from the Japan Karate Association teaching and grading syllabus.


Jion 慈恩 ("Mercy") is a representative kata in the Shotokan system because of the importance of the perfection of the basic stances it contains, notably zenkutsu dachi (front stance) and kiba dachi (horse stance). Also practiced in some Shitō-ryū organizations, emphasis is also placed on Kokutsu dachi, or back stance. The kata is noticeably shorter than its Shotokan counterpart.


The mastery of Jitte 十手 ("Ten Hands") should in theory enable one to face ten adversaries.[citation needed] Some[who?] claim that the name is derived from the position of the raised fists, resembling a type of sai known as a jitte, which occurs a number of times in the kata. This rather short kata of only 24 movements contains a number of defences that can be implemented against the bo. Also known in some styles as Sip Soo.[2]

Both "Jitte" and "Jutte" are correct pronunciations and romanized spellings of the kanji 十手.[3]

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  1. ^ Karate: The Complete Kata; Kanazawa, H.
  2. ^ Lee, Kang. "Tang Soo Do" A&C Black, 1998, p. 187
  3. ^ "JMdictDB - Japanese Dictionary Database, 十手". Retrieved 15 May 2016.